Happy Friday

It's Friday!  We are heading to southwestern Missouri to see my husband's family, but I wanted to leave you with a few of the books we read this week.  Oh, and I thought I'd show off my big Darth Vader.  Mr. B gave him to me for an early birthday present.  He is nestled in nicely among the dolls and trolls in the living room.  Every time I pass through the room, I swear, someone has changed his pose.  He also makes a good key holder.

Okay, so on to books.  We are still reading The Scarecrow of Oz at bedtime.  We read quite a few new picture books together, too.  I covered one of those already, and there's one more I'll showcase next week.  Here are the rest:

What We Read

Dolphin Baby! by Nicola Davies, illustrated by Brita Granström.  Candlewick Press, 2012.

Well, this one isn't so new.  We checked this one out some time ago, but it got buried beneath other books.  Big Sis is on a dolphin kick lately.  This is a lovely nonfiction account of a young dolphin's first year.  The illustrations are very sweet, and we are becoming very big fans of Nicola Davies' nature-inclined children's books.

Adventures With Barefoot Critters: An ABC Book by Teagan White.  Tundra Books, 2014.

I've been following Teagan White on Facebook for some time, and I don't even remember how I came across her.  I do know I was excited to get a hold of her first picture book!  The girls and I agree, this is a precious book.  It's an ABC book, yes, but not as basic as many, plus it also depicts the months of the year and changing of the seasons.  But it's the delightful anthropomorphic forest creatures that make the book so awesome.

The Midnight Library by Kazuno Kohara.  Roaring Brook Press, 2014.

I love Kazuno Kohara's illustrations.  Have you read Ghosts in the House! or Here Comes Jack Frost?  This one is just as adorable, but it has to do with a library!  And animals reading books!  At night!  This is the Midnight Library, and it's only open at night, and the little girl is there with the owls to check books out to the animals.  No backstory, no explanations, just a whimsical idea, adorably illustrated.

A Perfect Place for Ted by Leila Rudge.  Candlewick Press, 2014.

This one was published overseas under the title Ted, but I'm guessing no one in the U.S. wanted it to be accidentally confused with crude talking teddy bear movies directed by Seth McFarlane.  No, A Perfect Place for Ted is about a very cute dog with his own sweater, who goes unnoticed at the pet store.  He tries other ways to be noticed: he joins the circus, he tries to become a show dog.  It is only when a little girl named Dot finally sees him at the pet store that someone finally notices him.  Spoiler alert:  it's because her house is full of CATS.

What I Read

The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling.  Little, Brown, 2012.

As much as I loved the Harry Potter series, I wasn't in much of a hurry to run out and buy Rowling's new adult books.  I figured I'd get to them eventually.  However, I was invited to join a book club a few months ago (my first!), and last week, I finally made it to a meeting!  And this was the book for the month.  I liked it!  I could nitpick - it's soapy, some of the characters are a bit cartoonish, some are underdeveloped, the ending feels a bit much - but I liked the ideas she is expressing, and how she never tries to make her poor characters into saints.  In fact, there are few truly likeable characters here, but I found myself caring about them anyway.  That was a feat in itself.  (There are plot summaries all over the internet, if you haven't read it yet.  This is one of my typical Friday rushed mini-reviews.  I apologize.)

Sunday is my birthday.  Just throwin' that in there.  No big whoop.

Merry Weekend!  Happy Reading!

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  1. "Dun dun dun duh ta da"....the Darth Vader music! LOL! That is what I ALWAYS think to myself when I see him...that is so funny that you use him as a key holder! :)
    I really like seeing all these modern children's titles you post...I'm not very familiar with them as I'm always stuck in vintage type titles. It's fun seeing what's new out there. Thanks!

    1. I like vintage, too, but there are some great writers and illustrators working today, too. I miss my bookstore days, keeping up on everything new.

      I plan to use my Vader for holiday decor. It's very grown-up of me, I know. I must find a little Santa hat. And a friend suggested I make him a little Leia costume for Halloween... ;)

  2. The Darth Vader big figure is too much fun! I love when family members would participate and change his pose :) My family does the same with my dolls and plushies! That's a really awesome birthday present! Oh I saw that Teagan White book and I am so dying to get it. I didn't want to buy any new books this month but I so want this one that I will probably cave in. It's just too beautiful to pass! I love Teagan's work in general so I am happy she came out with a book like this! Have a good trip to Missouri!

    1. Thank you, my dear! Yes, we're home. Darth Vader greeted us in the living room and I handed him my keys. ;) The Teagan White book is gorgeous. Her illustrations are something special. My grandmother cleaned our house while we were gone - have I mentioned I'm a terrible housekeeper, although I do actually try? - but now we have to find a home for the things we brought from Missouri. My husband and his brother cleaned out their mother's storage unit. She died nearly three years ago, so it was time to finish. That was the main reason for the trip, but it wasn't as sad as it sounds. xoxo


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